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Automotive Electronics

Showa Denko Acquires Assets Related to SiC for Power Devices

Showa Denko (SDK) has decided to acquire assets concerning Sublimation-recrystallization Method to manufacture silicon carbide (SiC) wafers from Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation and Nippon Steel & Sumikin Materials Co., Ltd. by around the end of January 2018.

When compared with the mainstream silicon-based semiconductors, SiC-based power devices can operate under high-temperature, high-voltage, and high-current conditions, while substantially reducing energy loss. These features enable the production of smaller, lighter, and more energy efficient next-generation power control modules.

On the other hand, development of full-SiC-based power modules including MOSFET (metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor) requires SiC wafers with fewer crystal defects and further cost reduction.

SDK initiated research and development of SiC epitaxial wafers in 2005, and now produces and sells 3,000 epitaxial wafers per month. This time, SDK aims to improve the quality of its products through the acquisition of assets currently owned by Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Group.

In its ongoing medium-term business plan “Project 2020+,” SDK positions its business to produce and sell SiC epitaxial wafers for power devices as “Advantage-establishing” business. SDK will further strengthen its product development and supply system for SiC epitaxial wafers, aiming to contribute to the spread of SiC-based power devices.